EXAMINING STUDENTS’ EVALUATION OF SIGNIFICANT TEACHING CRITERIA AT THE MALAYSIAN DEFENCE UNIVERSITY
Keywords:exploratory factor analysis, knowledge evaluation, knowledge transfer, personal trait, student evaluations of teaching
This paper used an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) method to inquire about student evaluations of teaching (SET) among a batch of foundation students. A total of 504 students completed the lecturer evaluation questionnaire at the end of the semester. The current study was prompted by several factors, including teaching quality, lecturer characteristics, personal traits, knowledge evaluation and students’ ratings which provided the impetus for the present study. Lecturers were evaluated using a Likert scale ranging from one to five, with the numbers labelled very poor, poor, medium, good, and excellent, respectively. Two phases of exploratory factor analysis conducted in the study to determine whether the importance ratings students regarded formed separate domains with the mean and the standard deviation of the questionnaire results. The first phase of exploratory factor analysis (Study 1) evaluated 23 criteria attributes listed by Vevere and Kozlinskis (2011). The attributes are seven personal trait items; 11 knowledge transfer items, followed by five knowledge evaluation items. Besides, participants were also asked to indicate any additional attributes they considered important to be possessed by their lecturers, the strand of the course they were enrolled in, and their gender. The purpose of the second study (Study 2) is to provide a contrast to the first study based on the data with an improved version of the SET instrument and with a different cohort of students. We discovered that all the proposed attributes of a lecturer were important to the students, and the categories proposed by Vevere and Kozlinskis (2011) for evaluating lecturers did not correspond to the importance of categories evaluated by the students.